Put the chopped chocolate in a mixing bowl. Put the half-and-half and coffee beans in a saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Pour over the chopped chocolate and whisk until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth. Add the corn syrup and vanilla and whisk together. Pour through a strainer into a serving pitcher. If you're not serving immediately, chill until serving. (The recipe can be made up to this point and kept refrigerated up to 2 days in advance.) When ready to serve, heat the caramel sauce in the microwave. Heat the pitcher of chocolate soup in the microwave. Put a scoop of butter pecan ice cream in each of 8 serving bowls and drizzle with caramel sauce. At the table, pour the hot chocolate soup around the ice cream.
Caramel Sauce: Pour the sugar into the center of a deep saucepan. Carefully pour the water around the walls of the pan, trying not to splash any sugar onto the walls. Do not stir; gently draw your finger twice through the center of the sugar, making a cross, to moisten it. Over high heat, bring to a full boil and cook without stirring, swirling the pan occasionally to even out the color, until medium caramel in color, 5 to 10 minutes. Immediately turn off the heat and use a wooden spoon to slowly and carefully stir in the cream (it will bubble up and may splatter). Set aside. If the sauce has cooled, rewarm it over low heat (or in a microwave) until softened.
Yield: Preparation time: 30 minutes Cooking time: 10 minutes Ease of preparation: easy
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